Earlier this week, the Baltimore Orioles announced Roger McDowell as the new pitching coach. And McDowell hopes that the transition goes as smoothly as possible.
The Baltimore Orioles took a gigantic blow to their coaching staff when Dave Wallace retired from coaching and returned to the Atlanta Braves organization. Since then, the Orioles had been trying to find his replacement, and eventually chose Roger McDowell as Wallace’s replacement.
McDowell hopes that there will be a smooth transition into the coaching role, and he has a feeling there will be. McDowell and Wallace are close friends, and McDowell also has a good relationship with Dom Chiti, who left the organization to join Wallace with the Braves.
Here’s what McDowell had to say regarding his relationship with Wallace via MASNSports:
"“I mentored under Dave Wallace and I also have a very good friendship with Dom Chiti. I learned everything I know about being a pitching coach probably from Dave Wallace and I think from that standpoint the pitchers can rest assured that there will be a familiarity with them.”"
McDowell made sure to thank manager Buck Showalter for placing a good word in. On Tuesday, the move became official with McDowell becoming the pitching coach and Alan Mills becoming the Double-A pitching coach.
McDowell said the following regarding gaining the pitching staff’s trust next season:
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"“The most important thing for me has always been about the pitching staff and having a comfort level. I think it’s very important to build that relationship within the staff and to gain that trust.”"
There currently is no timetable for McDowell to gain a relationship with the pitching. However, he did say that it’s something he doesn’t want to rush.
"“Hopefully, it’ll be by spring training, having conversations, whether it’s face to face or on the phone, getting to know them and getting them as comfortable as they can be. Usually from my experience, when you’re able to execute consistently is when you probably are the most comfortable in your surroundings. And that’s what I hope to bring to the table. We get that comfortable feeling, and not to make it a comfortable feeling where we don’t compete, but compete at the highest level in the toughest division in baseball.“That being said, we’ll cross that bridge and we’ll make those adjustments. It’s based on them, not on me. It’s me getting to know them and gaining their trust in me.”"
Despite the Orioles filling two positions, their work is far from over. They still have to replace the director of pitching Rick Peterson, and the team needs a new assistant hitting coach.